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April 2004 - Issue No. #53 (p. 12-15)


Issue #53 contains a number of activities that you might find useful for teaching about the Olympic Games:
  1. Why Teach about the Olympics?
  2. Teaching Ideas
  3. Teaching Resources (websites and books)
  4. Reading Passage: The Olympic Games
  5. Activity: Redesign the Olympics!
  6. Other activities: quizzes, games, quotes, world peace...
Also, don't forget to check out Issue #54 and Issue #55 for more ideas!

Olympic Quotes

  • For nations to want to collect a lot of gold medals, as proof of national superiority, degrades the whole idea of competitive sports.

    - Dick McTaggart, British Boxer

  • I know why we're here. We're here to spread basketball internationally and make more money for someone. We're going to win the gold medal, but there won't be any life changing decisions because of it. Poor people will still be poor and racism and sexism will still exist.

    - Charles Barkley, US basketball star

  • It's not the free world vs communism any more. Now you take sides with sneaker companies. People look at the Olympics as Nike versus Reebok.

    - John Horan US publisher

OLYMPIC QUIZ (True or False)

  1. The Olympic Games began in ancient Rome.
  2. The name Olympics comes from the god Olym.
  3. In the original Olympic Games, all athletes had to compete naked, wearing no clothes.
  4. In ancient times, all wars stopped for one month while the Olympic Games were held.
  5. Both men and women participated in the ancient Olympic Games .
  6. The modern Olympic Games were the idea ofan American.
  7. The first modern Olympic Games was in 1928.
  8. The Olympic Games are held every 6 years.
  9. The symbol of the Olympics is 4 rings.
  10. The official motto of the Olympic Games is "swifter, higher, stronger".

Click here to see solutions


  1. In the 1900 Olympics in Paris, some Christian athletes refused to take part in the finals because they were scheduled on a Sunday.
  2. An Italian marathon runner in 1908 in London collapsed 300 meters before the finish but was carried across the finish line by the judges
  3. In the 1936 Olympics, fans from Poland couldn't believe an American woman beat their best Polish runner, so they made the American take her clothes off to check if she was a man.
  4. For the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, Adolf Hitler had signs put up over the toilets saying "Dogs and Jews not allowed".
  5. A Japanese athlete committed suicide (harakiri) after the 1964 Tokyo Olympics because he couldn't win a gold medal for Japan.

Click here to see solutions

Match The Event With The Olympic

  1. Mexico (1968)

  2. Munich (1976)

  3. Montreal (1972)

  4. Seoul (1988)

  5. Atlanta (1996)
  1. Canadian Ben Johnson was accused of doping and had his 100 meter gold medal taken away from him.

  2. Athletes from Taiwan were banned from taking part in Olympic events in order to pacify Communist China.

  3. Arab terrorists took over the Olympic Village and killed 12 Israeli athletes.

  4. A bomb exploded in the Olympic Park , killing one person & injuring 110 others.

  5. 260 students were killed by the Army for protesting the money spent hosting the Olympics.

Click here to see solutions

(for student research, writing and presentations)

  • Pierre de Coubertin - idealistic French aristocrat who founded the modern Olympic Games

  • Jesse Owens - Black American runner who won four gold medals in the 1936 Berlin Olympics, thus disproving Hitler's Nazi theories of Aryan supremacy

  • Son Ki-Jong (Sohn Kee-chung) - Korean gold medallist at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin who had to compete for the Japanese team because Korea was a colony of Japan

Next Page: Redesign the Olympic Games


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Kip A. Cates, Tottori University, Koyama, Tottori City, JAPAN 680-8551
E-mail: Work Tel/Fax: 0857-31-5650